Coconut (song)

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Single by Harry Nilsson
from the album Nilsson Schmilsson
B-side "The Moonbeam Song"
Released 1972 (1972)
Format 7" single
Recorded 1971 (1971)
Genre Calypso
Length 3:52
Label RCA Victor
Writer(s) Harry Nilsson
Producer(s) Richard Perry
Harry Nilsson singles chronology
"Jump into the Fire"
"Spaceman "

"Coconut" is a novelty song written and first recorded by Harry Nilsson.

Original version[edit]

The third single from his 1971 album, Nilsson Schmilsson, it reached #8 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. Billboard ranked it as the No. 66 song for 1972.[1] It features four distinct characters (the narrator, the brother, the sister, and the doctor), three of which (narrator, sister, and doctor) are sung in different voices by Nilsson. The song describes a story in which a boy and his sister concoct a beverage consisting of lime and coconut and drink it, which causes the girl to have a severe stomach ache; when she calls the doctor late at night, the doctor (annoyed at being awakened by such a complaint) laughs her off and recommends that she "put the lime in the coconut and drink 'em both up"—the exact same idea that caused the stomach ache in the first place—and then call the doctor back in the morning. "Coconut" was the first composition that Nilsson both wrote and recorded that reached the Hot 100. There are no chord changes; the only chord in the song is an arpeggiated C7th.

Backed with "Jump in the Fire", two 7" singles were cataloged RCA 2214,[2] and when reissued, RCA 447-0940.[3]


The Nilsson version has appeared in the films Practical Magic, Dick, The Ice Storm, and Reservoir Dogs, as well as the television shows House M.D., Bones, Lost, and Parenthood. The video game Alan Wake also features this song in its soundtrack.

The Simpsons parody the song when Homer sings "you put the beer in the coconut" in the episode "Mom and Pop Art", Season 10 Episode 19.

The song was also performed by The Muppets in a skit on episode 410 of The Muppet Show, featuring Kermit the Frog in a hospital bed.[4] [5]


Dannii Minogue version[edit]

Single by Dannii Minogue
from the album Girl
B-side "Everybody Changes Underwater"
"Heaven Can Wait"
"Someone New"
Released December 7, 1998 (1998-12-07)
Format CD single
Genre Dance
Length 4:50
Label WEA
Writer(s) Harry Nilsson
Producer(s) Flexifinger
(Original vocal production: DNA)
Dannii Minogue singles chronology
"Everlasting Night"

Dannii Minogue recorded the song in 1994 with UK dance producers DNA. When Minogue parted ways with Mushroom Records in 1995 and signed to Eternal Records in 1996, she had the track remixed by producers Flexifinger.

The track was originally used as a hidden bonus track on her third album Girl. It was subsequently released on December 7, 1998 (1998-12-07) in Australia as the fourth and final single from that album.

In 2009, the original version of "Coconut" was made available on the compilation The 1995 Sessions.

Track listing[edit]

CD single[edit]

  1. "Coconut" (Harry Nilsson) – 4:50
    Production: DNA, Flexifinger
  2. "Everybody Changes Underwater" (Dannii Minogue, David Green, Ian Masterson) – 6:36
    Production: Flexifinger
  3. "Heaven Can Wait" (7" Version) (Brian Higgins, Matt Gray, Stuart McLennan, Tim Powell) – 4:06
    Production: Brian Higgins, Matt Gray
    Additional production: Metro
  4. "Someone New" (David Green, Ian Masterson) – 9:22
    Production: Flexifinger
  5. "Heaven Can Wait" (Trouser Enthusiasts' Cloud Nine Mix) (Higgins, Gray, McLennan, Powell) – 12:13
    Production: Brian Higgins, Matt Gray
    Remix: Trouser Enthusiasts
  6. "Heaven Can Wait" (D-Bop's Heavenly Girl Mix) (Higgins, Gray, McLennan, Powell) – 7:47
    Production: Brian Higgins, Matt Gray
    Remix and additional production: D-Bop
    Mislabelled on both sleeve and disc as "D-Bop's Melt & Sparkle Mix".

Music video[edit]

Minogue wasn't able to film a music video for the single as she was touring the UK on her Unleashed '98 Tour, so a montage video featuring images from "All I Wanna Do", "Everything I Wanted", and "Disremembrance" was made.

The video was never released commercially until 2007, when it finally appeared on The Video Collection DVD as one of the bonus videos.

Other cover versions[edit]


External links[edit]